Paneer with Spinach (Saag Paneer)

Enjoy gourmet restaurant-style Indian Saag Paneer (Spinach with Paneer) - fried paneer cheese cooked in creamy spinach gravy with cumin, chili and garam masala. Saag Paneer is one of the most popular vegetarian dishes ordered in Indian restaurants. This dish it can be prepared not only from spinach, but also variety of leafy greens, such as: mustard greens, collard greens or kale. The greens can be chopped fine and cooked. Alternatively, they may be cooked and then processed in a blender for extra smooth texture.

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Credit: Kanwardeep Kaur

Ingredients:

Serves 4

For frying paneer:

  • ½ lbs/250 g paneer (cut into cubes)
  • 2-3 tbsp oil for frying (optional)

Spinach gravy:

  • 1 lb/450 g spinach or any other leafy vegetables of your choice
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp chickpea flour
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 1 onion chopped
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • salt to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp of vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream or half and half
  • 3 tbsp ginger julienned
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh coriander
  • Preparation time: 10-15 minutes
  • Cooking time: about 20 minutes
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How to make Saag Paneer (Indian Cheese in Spinach creamy gravy):

  1. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium heat. When hot, add the paneer cubes and gently fry, turning often, until the cubes are light golden brown on all sides. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. You can put on a bounty paper to absorb oil.
  2. Chop spinach and set aside.
  3. Heat oil in non-sticking pan. Add onion. After 3-4 minutes add chopped finely garlic and ginger paste. Sauté until light brown, then add chickpea flour and mix well to avoid lumps.
  4. Cook until oil emerges, then add spinach.
  5. If you want to get very smooth consistency, put the mixture in the blender and procces till smooth or till you get desired result. (You can also skip this step).
  6. Then, stir in the garam masala, chili powder, cumin powder and salt. Mix well.
  7. Finnaly, add fried paneer and cream or half and half (for a healthier version). Cover and cook for another 5 minutes on low-medium heat. Adjust the salt.
  8. To serve, finish with swirl of cream and serve garnished with julienned ginger and fresh coriander.

Tip:

  • Adding fresh cream to the dish, not only make it more tasty but also reduces the bitterness of the spinach leaves.
  • You can replace paneer with tofu, soy or any other plant basted ingredient.

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